Apps and wearables – developments over the summer

Trying at least temporarily to distract this editor’s attention from his recent unfortunate experience with Jawbone technology, here are some interesting app and wearables snippets received over the summer.

We begin with news of the first CE certified mole checking app, SkinVision which rates moles using a simple traffic light system (using a red, orange or green risk rating). The app lets users store photos in multiple folders so they can track different moles over time. It aims to detect changing moles (color, size, symmetry etc.) that are a clear sign that something is wrong and that the person should visit a doctor immediately.

This contrasts with the findings of a paper published in June examining 46 insulin calculator apps, 45 of which were found to contain material problems, resulting in the conclusion that :”The majority of insulin dose calculator apps provide no protection against, and may actively contribute to, incorrect or inappropriate dose recommendations that put current users at risk of both catastrophic overdose and more subtle harms resulting from suboptimal glucose control.”, which to say the least of matters is worrying. (more…)

3rings smart plug fundraising on Kickstarter

[grow_thumb image=”http://telecareaware.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/06/3rings.gif” thumb_width=”150″ /]A note from founder and chairman Steve Purdham brings the news that the 3rings smart plug [TTA 11 Mar], which tracks an older one’s activity through everyday actions such as turning on an electric tea kettle or TV and radio on, is raising funds on Kickstarter through 13 July. Their goal is $30,709 (£20,000) of which $10,306 (£6,712) has been raised with 24 days to go. With product design and testing complete, the funds will go towards facilitating production. Pledges start at £2 and go up to £5,000 for practically everything listed in the lower donation levels, a special evening in Oxford for two and an autographed, personalized picture and autobiography of Manchester United and Scotland legend Willie Morgan. Note: the 3rings plug and service is only available in the UK, but if the service is available later in your country, any subscription pledges will be honored. Best of luck to Steve and the 3rings team! Release.

An alert watch for older adults that responds to voice commands

[grow_thumb image=”http://telecareaware.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/UnaliWear_Images_r6_c4.jpg” thumb_width=”150″ /]This Editor has been in Watch Overload (see Apple Watch) for months, but this may be an exception. The UnaliWear Kanega watch (in development) is for the sizable market of older adults who would wear a well-designed watch or band for safety assistance, but not one that screams Old Person With Plastic PERS, an objective shared with the latest edition of buddi [TTA 16 Dec 14]. Their prototype looks like a fairly techno steel watch, a little on the chunky side, but it packs in a lot: a 9-axis accelerometer for fall detection, a GPS locator, Bluetooth LE, cellular/Wi-Fi connectivity and a digital analog display with time and date. What’s unique: no buttons, smartphone or other tether. It works via speech recognition and ‘talks with’ the wearer (via mechanical voice, messaging on the display and a feed to a BLE hearing aid if worn.) (more…)

Eimo UK telehealth device fundraising via Kickstarter

[grow_thumb image=”http://telecareaware.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/07/Eimo.jpg” thumb_width=”190″ /]Updated 25 July    If our exclusive on the ‘tricorder-like’ Eimo device caught your attention [TTA 19 May], you will be interested in the extra information about it given on its Kickstarter page. See the second video down and read some more on its background, history and the philosophy of the developers, iMonSys, located in North Yorkshire. You may even want to pledge some cash to help produce the first 1,000 units! (Unfortunately, funding stands at only £2,000 of a required £145,000 pledge by Wednesday, 13 August.) iMonSys will also be developing two versions: for home use to retail at £300 and the medical version to retail at £600. What is different about this is that based on the demo, anyone can be taught to use Eimo and it produces a reading of core body temperature, full ECG trace, oxygen levels, pulse and blood pressure in well under two minutes as seen in the video. Also it stores data so that the ‘funny turn’ that doesn’t consistently happen can also be captured and stored for later analysis by a doctor. Will it actually be a vital signs monitor ‘which even Granny can use’? Based on the video it certainly seems so.

Update: Laurie Orlov picks up iMonSys’ local roots in Staithes in her post on Boomer Health Tech Watch linking to an article in the Whitby Gazette. Founder and developer Graham Priestley’s original concept resembled the ‘black box’ on an aircraft to monitor a soldier’s vital signs, with the original research under the aegis of the (UK) Ministry of Defence but shelved around 2008. He picked this up two years later with the assistance of the University of Hull, and is currently seeking to

Our readers can help spread the word on this UK product on Kickstarter!